Chinese FM confirms detention of Japanese national on suspicion of spying
Published: Mar 27, 2023 04:41 PM
Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Mao Ning Photo: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

The Chinese Foreign Ministry confirmed on Monday that a Japanese national was under criminal detention under suspicion of engaging in espionage, saying that Chinese officials had notified the Japanese Embassy in accordance with Vienna Convention and China-Japan consular relations. 

The detained Japanese national suspected of espionage has violated both China's Criminal Law and Counterespionage Law and the case remains under investigation, Mao Ning, a spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry told a press conference on Monday. 

Mao said that China is a country ruled by law, and that all foreigners coming to China must abide by Chinese laws and violators will be held accountable. In the past years, there were several similar cases involving Japanese nationals and Japan should strengthen education and awareness among Japanese passport holders planning to enter China.   

Japan's Kyodo News reported on Sunday that a Japanese man detained in Beijing earlier this month was an employee of Astellas Pharma Inc., and a spokesperson for the Japanese drugmaker confirmed.

Previously in 2015, two Japanese nationals were arrested in China on similar charges. The two men were believed to have been collecting information at the request of Japan's Public Security Intelligence Agency. One of them was held in Northeast China's Liaoning Province, near the border with North Korea, according to local media reports at the time.